North Las Vegas layoffs take effect, city jail closes
North Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- The budget crisis is hitting home for workers in North Las Vegas where layoffs went into effect Sunday. July 1st marks the start of the new fiscal year.
Several parks and city maintenance workers will no longer have jobs. The library and community centers will see their hours cut.
The biggest impact is at the city jail, which is being closed altogether.
Buses could be seen transporting some of the approximately 300 prisoners from the facility on Sunday.
"We don't for see any negative impact on public safety because of the fact that that was our primary focus," says Sgt. Tim Bedwell, with the North Las Vegas Police Department.
By closing the jail, police say budget cuts will not impact officers on the streets.
And if you think no jail gives you a free ticket to commit crimes in North Las Vegas, think again.
"What this means to you if you get arrested in North Las Vegas tomorrow is you're going to ride three miles farther to jail," says Sgt. Bedwell. "You're still going to jail."
You'll now be driven to the Las Vegas jail, where the city is renting beds. The North Las Vegas facility will be maintained for when times get better and it can re-open.
"There is no loss of face in this. We can stand up and say we're doing the best thing for the community," says Sgt. Bedwell. "We're saving money, we're keeping police officers on the streets, we're keeping our core services and I think that's what people want and we've done it."
The biggest downside to the jail's closure is it does mean about 100 people are losing their jobs. North Las Vegas says some are opting for early retirement instead.